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Jan 25, 2018 3 min read

What the Accounting Industry Can Learn from the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit

What can tax pros and accountants learn from a tech summit? After recently attending the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit, we have a few takeaways that can benefit the accounting industry.

What the Accounting Industry Can Learn from the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit

We recently had the chance to attend a huge technology conference right in our own backyard: the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit. With speakers such as Steve Young, Omar Johnson (former head of marketing for Beats), and Mitt Romney, we left the conference with a ton of fresh insight on how we can make Canopy better.

But what we learned doesn’t only apply to the tech industry. In fact, the majority of the topics addressed are things that apply in the tax and accounting industry as well. So let’s take a quick look at two of the best things we learned at the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit that can help you become better accountants and tax pros.

Focus on the needs of your clients.

“Don’t focus on your product. Focus on your audience, and how your product fills their needs.”

-Caryn Marooney, VP of Global Communications at Facebook

This advice feels obvious, but it’s surprising how often it is neglected by all types of businesses in every industry. People want their customers to know how great their service or product is. So, naturally, they spend a lot of time and energy explaining all the amazing features and ways that their offering is superior.

But clients don’t actually care how great your offering is—at least not directly. They don’t care about your super fast process or 12-touchpoint accuracy guarantee. Your clients want to know that their taxes will be done quickly and accurately. Clients want to know how your offering will simplify or enrich their lives. It’s a subtle difference in messaging but one that will make all the difference for your clients.

Success is not a zero-sum game.

“What do I have to do to be better today than yesterday?”

-Steve Young, Hall of Fame NFL quarterback

Steve Young is probably as well acquainted with competition as anyone. But according to Young, success isn’t primarily about trying to be better than everyone else. Success is about being better than you were the day before. In Young’s NFL career, that meant spending less energy warring with Joe Montana for the starting job and more energy on making sure that competition made him the best quarterback he could be.

It’s the same in business. We don’t live in a scarce society where someone else must fail in order for us to succeed. We live in an abundant society where we can benefit from the success of those around us and vise versa. So don’t worry so much about competing with coworkers or other local practices. Instead you can thrive simply by focusing on what you can do to make yourself a better employee, employer, and resource to your clients.

Want to learn more about how you can help others succeed at your tax practice? Check out Preparing Your Tax Practice for the Next Generation of Partners.


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